tv Happening Now FOX News December 11, 2009 11:00am-1:00pm EST
bill: did you get your shopping done? martha: i am about three- quarters of the way there. i have a lot of wrapping to do. see you. [captioning made possible by fox news channel] captioned by the national captioning institute --www.ncicap.org-- jane: we want to take you to arizona, where diving crews are beginning a grim task. it will be searching bacchanal, thought to be about 20 feet deep. they are looking for a 7-year- old boy after he jumped into that canal to save a friend who had fallen into the water. the 11-year-old boy fell into the water, and the 7-year-old jumped in after him. the 11-year-old got a -- at -- out safely, but crews have little hope of finding the 7-year-old alive. we will keep you updated as we
go through that process. jon: good morning. susan pal is her name. she is a stockbroker, a mother of two, and missing. they will be here to tell us how they plan on questioning. jon: she is the mother from florida accused of killing her two-year-old daughter, cayley. and right now, congress wants to give itself more money to spend. a lot more, actually. as your representatives get ready to pass spending bills, they are bumping up against the federal debt ceiling. it prevents the debt from going over several trillion dollars,
so how do you get around that? you make a higher ceiling. is it unusual to raise the ceiling? >> not at all. it has been done several times, but it is not something to like to publicize. this is the durst organization, a private company's estimate of the national debt shot earlier today. it is not a government accounting. still, it can give you a good idea of how far and read the u.s. is today -- and the red -- in the red the u.s. is today. but congress does raise the ceiling whenever the u.s. gets close, and that may happen this month. congress is expected to raise the ceiling, possibly by 1.8 trillion. jon: a lot of republicans are
upset about this and trying to slow down the process, i guess? >> in several ways. a press conference is coming to discuss the bill and change how the house goes about raising the debt ceiling. these lawmakers want to require a two-thirds vote to raise the credit limit. that is about to get underway shortly. also, top republican john boehner intends a measure that it would scrap the bank bailout program and put any money coming back in from the bank toward paying down debt. boehner said in a statement that taxpayer money should be used for debt reduction, not as a slush fund to bail out politicians. but republicans are quite outnumbered in the house and congress overall, so this may go nowhere. jon: they may tied to the
defense bill? >> right. they want to do it before the campaign gets under way. republicans think they will vote against the defense spending bill, even though that means there will also vote against funding the war. jon: we want to know what you think. do you support raising the debt ceiling? go to foxnews.com and add your vote to our poll. jane: the official known as the pages are -- pay czar is about to release the latest briefing. he will issue his determination
for pay structures at citicorp, aig, general motors, chrysler, chrysler financial, and gmac. it will affect the highest paid individuals at these companies. back in october, he slashed pay for the top 25 earners at those companies. a major storm is blanketing the midwest. with snow creating freezing temperatures, many communities have had to clear schools today. 15 inches fell on green bay, wisconsin, and there is more to come from this storm. what are we looking at? >> even though it is well up in eastern canada, it still is affecting the weather from the midwest and plains states, because there are strong, gusty winds. it is cold enough, with temperatures in the teens and 20's, but with this cold wind,
it is even colder, and with that wind coming over the great lakes, we have lots of lake effect snow to talk about. in fact, two bands of lake effect snow. notice the corridor, sunshine. with gusty winds, there already flight delays out of new york at jfk and laguardia. bundle up. holon new york city and rochester and buffalo, it feels like well below freezing. in the southeast, also chilly. birmingham a primary -- and
montgomery, the eastern part of texas. our next storm will be spreading reign across texas tomorrow. and we also have what weather in california today. a little farther east, phoenix and albuquerque are fine, but what weather in san francisco and los angeles today. jane: new developments on the rescue efforts of 20 elk hunters that were trapped in arizona. they've now accounted for all of the hunters. officials got 22 reports for missing hikers or families concerned about them. some declined assistance and were able to get out on their own. emergency workers had really been working over and beyond, around the clock. the crews used everything from choppers to snow mobiles to find them. they got them out. jon: people are in the mood to
shop, me before warm clothing. the holiday shopping season is looking anything but ho-hum. people are in a mood to buy. across the board, there is big demand for all kinds of things. what are we buying? >> i think that early shopping for jane may have paid off last month. i cannot wait to see what you have got hurt. -- got hurt. we saw twice the gain expected on wall street for retail sales, and that translates to an increase of more than 1%. we are shopping for a wide variety of different things, but half the gain came from gasoline sales and a little more came from our sales for food and beverages. hopefully we are not drinking and driving, but we're doing a lot of this, and that is helping
retail sales. that is part of the reason we're seeing this game. we're also shopping for electronics, appliances, and building materials. economists like to see that. however, we are not shopping too much for clothing. regardless, good news for the shopping site, for consumer spending and how we feel about the economy, and that is helping out wall street today. jane: they are concerns today about the role of private security in iraq and afghanistan. former guards from blackwater say they were so involved in secret operations that the line behind the cia and then became blurred. steve centanni is up the pentagon for us. what can you tell us about these rates? >> blackwater's job was to provide security for the cia and
american military troops, but apparently they stepped over the line, according to testimony from this article and former intelligence officials, including current ones. as you said, the lines were blurred, and they went on clandestine missions during the height of the insurgency in iraq in 2004 to 2006, rousting people out, arresting them, taking detainees away, along with the cia. was that their job? it will come under investigation. the house intelligence panel says this is a scandal waiting to be example -- examined, and the contract with black water got way out of hand. they say they never had a contract of this kind, and that is as far as they will go. their statement -- they have changed their names since that date in september 2007 when
there were 17 civilians killed, and black water came under fire for that. the company says they were never under contract to participate in covert cia rates for special operations in afghanistan or anywhere else in any obligation to the contrary by any news organization would be false, so they are totally denying this. cia employees to contract to enhance the skills of our own work force. this enhances their ability to manage their skill set, so to speak, and their accountability remains there's, but they are not contracting directly with to the contract with. jon: casey anthony is in court right now, and the judge could make important decisions. harris is watching it from the
breaking news desk. >> attorneys are trying to argue without conceding guilt that if their client did kill her toddler daughter, she did not do it in a manner that would cause suffering. it is a tight rope that attorneys have to walk when making a case like this, but without conceding that she committed murder, they have to say the state cannot prove that there were aggravating factors like child abuse, cruelty, or torture, and acknowledge the child knew she was going to die. now in court is something we have not seen from casey anthony, live from our fox affiliate in orlando, she was sobbing heavily. i asked our video editor if we could roll it back a little bit. she was sobbing. i did not hear the defense say anything in particular, but i do not know what would make her
cry. that would be presumptuous of me. but she was certainly breaking down very quietly in the courtroom in tears just a minute ago. they are trying to prove without conceding guilt that this case does not merit the death penalty. jane: new developments this hour in the case of a stockbroker who was the mother of two of your children. and police are saying that this looks suspicious. we will get details straight from the investigators, next.
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taken the boys camping, and he was asked about how distraught he feels. take a listen. >> we want her back. i love her, my boys love her. any help to try and find her would be appreciated. jane: susan has not been found at this point. please call the disappearance suspicious and they say that they planned to question their husband -- her husband again. what will they be asking him in a second did you? >> we do plan on re-interviewing him, but i cannot disclose those questions. jane: i want to play an interview about the
circumstances of the boys being gone and what she was doing the other night. >> i asked when the last time he saw her was, and he said 12:30 at night, so he was getting ready for bed. they normally go to bed late, so that did not seem abnormal. but then they had gone camping with their two young children sunday night, during a snowstorm in salt lake city. i was concerned, because it did not sound normal to me. but i have no evidence that he was involved in anything. jane: when susan's that was pressed earlier in the interview about he thought that he might not be fully answered questions, he said he would prefer not to answer it. your department has called this suspicious. what makes you uncomfortable?
>> the totality of the situation. the fact that everyone was listed as missing, and then the husband and the children returned. one statement was that susan was at the house, and when returned, she was gone. jane: just to confirm, first cellular phone, house, and carr were still at a home? >> the family has one automobile. but these are items you would usually take with you if you were going someplace. jane: it is reported that friends and neighbors have said she was openly talking about a divorce and hoping to save money. with having domestic problems? >> i do not have any personal knowledge of that.
the husband is not currently a suspect. we have interviewed him once and hope to interview him a second time. we have a lot of questions. we of not got a lot of firm answers, and that is what makes this situation so suspicious. jane: thank you. we have been putting the number on the screen there, and we will have it on our blog. if you know anything, please call them. they're looking for some help. good luck.
canal in may set arizona -- mesa, ariz.. are considering this to be a recovery effort. he did something so heroic. he jumped into canal yesterday after another little boy had fallen in. several little boys were playing here. it is moving at about 5 miles an hour, and it is about 20 feet deep, 60 feet across. he jumped in as a hero. that boy makes it out, but the other did not. they have not seen him since. they call up the search just today due to darkness, picking it up again a little while ago. this is a very sad situation, a tough job for those divers right now as they look for this child. back to you. jon: nancy pelosi indicate she
is ready to compromise with the senate on health care reform. she is taking a close look on the latest proposal to expand medicare. it is very different from the house plan, including government-run insurance, the so-called public option. democrats helped pass a bill late next week paving the way for negotiations. what will come out of all this? pete snyder is the ceo of new media strategies. our other guest is a partner were part of her job involves lobbying for health care. kelly, what is the idea here? nancy pelosi used to say she would not consider anything that does not have a public option, and all the sudden, she is warming to the senate plan. why? >> because the reality is the public option cannot find the senate. it has taken awhile for interest groups to back down. the have not completely backed down, but they are beginning to
see reality. in the senate, you need 60 votes to get anything done. and there are many moderate democrats who have always been concerned about public option. so now they have been sent to the office to see how much it costs, and that is the alternative. is a time of hope for watching and waiting. the majority leader has said he wants to keep the cost of the bill around 800 billion, we will see how it costs and go from there. but at the end of the day, the president will get a moderate package that does not include the so-called public option. jon: what is under the christmas tree here, would you get into the senate bill? are there concerns that this medicare expansion idea will cost a lot of money, as well? >> the american public needs to divorce themselves from this
entire process. speaker pelosi knows that her political life is on the line. for the first time, democrats are already talking about the possibility of a gop takeover of the house. stan greenberg, a respected pollster, stated publicly last week that democrats could lose up to 20 seats. there needs to be a turn of 25 for republicans to take over, but you know that democrats are thinking 30, 35 privately. so pelosi is fighting for her life. the problem with this compromise is it is a trojan horse. the expansion of medicaid is going to be a single payer government takeover of health care, and americans need to divorce themselves of this process. jon: yes, medicare and medicaid are not shining examples of solvency. we want to cover more people with them?
>> at the end of the day, we will allow uninsured folks to buy into the federal plan. that is where this ends up at the end of the day. but this will reduce taxes, and let me finish. it will get rid of the hidden tax we're all paying now, about $1,000 each family, pay it to cover the cost of folks without insurance. we have to get everyone out of insurance plans to we stop paying hidden taxes on folks without health coverage and just go to the emergency room for primary coverage. we all know that that does not work. >> we all know that this would mean massive taxes. it is a huge problem. americans need to say stop and let's pause for a moment.
we need to understand -- why don't we take our time? try to do something, anything before the end of the year so it does not but the president went over in his first year in office. let's put the politics aside and take our time with this thing. jane: a u.s. predator drone has taken out a top al qaeda operative. who was it? boss:hey, glad i caught you. i was on my way to present ideas
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jon: a u.s. air strike has reportedly killed a high-ranking al qaeda operatives inside pakistan. fox news learned that it is not osama bin laden or his second- in-command. drones are proving themselves to be more than just eyes in the sky. that are taking out terrorist search with pinpoint accuracy. but pakistan is pushing backed -- pushing back. what is the big concern about using these drones? if you can get a high level al qaeda guy, isn't it worth any cost? >> that is a good point, and we have been able to target 11 of
al qaeda's top 20 leaders. they have targeted high-level figures. unfortunately, the cost comes from the pakistani side of the border. they have been very uncomfortable with the attacks publicly, because there is discord among the population. news media there can to sensationalize the attacks and exaggerate the number of civilians killed, stirring up more anti-americanism. jane: jon: how many civilians have been killed? >> the numbers have been all over the map. one recent study by the new america foundation edited by peter bergen, an al qaeda expert, estimates 33% of target killed have been civilian, out
of a total of 1000 people killed over a three-year or a four year time span from ground strikes. so possibly one out of three targeted civilians. jon: isn't it true that al qaeda likes to fill these high-level council meetings with women and children so if they do get some military attack there will automatically be civilian casualties? >> that is true. that has been a known and proven tactic. it is also important to note that many of these people are slaughtering civilians themselves. so indirectly, we are protecting civilians with these drone attacks, and that is a point often lost in the debate. jon: but by not having troops on the ground, there obviously huge concerns about forces on the ground. having the strikes come from the air, isn't that the best we can possibly hope for, given the
situation? >> it is. and in the words of leon panetta, cia director, it is the only game in town. pakistan has refused to allow the u.s. to assist them in order operations. and while there has been vocal opposition and the media, they are very much involved behind- the-scenes in the stripes, and many of them are watched with the government's consent. jane: now to another hot spot. defense secretary gates his warning iran that they face even stronger economic sanctions over their nuclear program. the u.s. and allies are accusing iran of failing to follow through on promises to open up to nuclear inspection. james rosen is in d.c. for us. you have to say, it feels like we have been here before.
>> we have. the movie ends the same way every day, with iranians installing more centrifuges for enriching uranium. today, gates joined the chorus, saying that absent a change of course by year's end, they will again face a fifth round of sanctions. this comes after what appeared to be a breakthrough in negotiations, when iran seemed to agree to it, but then nothing. also, perhaps, when we could classify as a booby we have seen before, aides to the supreme leader in iran said that the year-end deadline will not work as pressure leverage, as they put it, and also saying that they involve sovereign rights to valuable technology. it is true that iran is a signatory to the nonproliferation treaty, but at
repeated times over recent years, they have been caught hiding major nuclear installations within borders, and that is, of course, not a sovereign right. jon: a recent resurgence in baghdad's nightclub scene could be coming to an end. police raided dozens of clubs and stores selling alcohol in that city. the governor supports that blue, that businesses were undermining. is a baghdad supposed to be back in the swing of things? didn't we hear that just a few months ago? >> the fun has started, and now it has been knocked on the head. there were quite a few places pop up at the past six months, with baghdad and iraq and back to normal. people do like a drink, even though they are muslims and alcohol is forbidden.
but they have always broken the rules. but the prime minister issued a personal edict closing down a lot of the stores, and in particular, nightclubs. what he is trying to do is appease conservative supporters. however, a lot are comfortable here and want to lose support, not gain it. jon: how are they supposed to cope with the ban? >> when you are surrounded by barriers, you need something to relieve the pressure, and most people in the evening do enjoy a drink. but shots in the green zone were closed down first, bizarre, because those are the ones that are contained and do not cause a
year-old. he is a hero for dumping and to save his friend. they pulled his body from the canal just a few moments ago. jon: it has been a year since the arrest of bernie madoff, and charities have lost huge amounts of money. scores of terry's lost hundreds of millions of dollars they thought that they had safely stashed away. has bernie madoff talked yet? >> the fact is, he has never said a word of assistance to a prosecutor or anyone trying to find the money. so he has yet to come clean.
he insists he did it alone, and get others have already pled guilty to helping him. you have got his right hand man who is pled guilty, and his accountant has pled guilty. two i.t. guys, they have been charged, but police have not been at it on their behalf. jon: what is ruth madoff's story these days? >> the deal with her is a lot of people -- she forfeited everything she had. prosecutors allowed her to keep $2.5 million which she had originally inherited from her father. but her legal fees were
eating up money. she attempted to buy an apartment in manhattan, but she has been living with relatives and burned through the cash he has. she does receive a check, so she will have income from the rest of her life. courtesy of the federal government. jane: a boyfriend of american amanda knox convicted of murdering their friend in italy? he is speaking out from a jail. what he is saying about the crime.
verdict, her boyfriend is speaking out, saying that amanda knox is too sweet to murder anyone. amy is live in london with the latest. >> he spoke to the italian newspaper and said, to the question, do you think amanda would be able to kill in a fit of rage, he said, "i dare not think of a thing like that the." he said he would go back to anonymity as soon as possible. he wants a normal life of a boy of 25 years. he has been given a 25-year sentence. basically, the interview talked about his wanting to fade into anonymity, and at some point emerge a normal person again, but obviously that is not likely to happen. again, this is the first interview given since his
conviction last weekend. jon: what is the next step? >> they are appealing the sentence. earlier next week, the senator from the knox family's home state of washington made a statement saying she believes that justice was not properly served in the italian court and she has appealed to hillary clinton to look into the case. secretary clinton for her part has said she is going to listen to concerns but she has to tread a delicate line because this could easily turn into a diplomatic scandal if it is not handled properly. of course, italians have been outraged that such allegations had been made, that there judicial system did not do this to the highest standard. jon: thank you.
jane: the president and first lady wave to the crowd from a balcony of the hotel in oslo after he receives his nobel peach -- peace prize. right now, they are on their way back to washington, and we expect to see them landing in an hour or so. the editorial page editor of the "wall street journal" is with us now. paul, good to see you. certainly, praise from many corners for that speech. how much will his words help him as he arrives back on u.s. soil? >> he had been criticized so much for apologizing for america, and so many speeches about previous administrations, he was defending american interests, the use of force, and the necessity of it on behalf of values and principles are around the world. i think that that will resonate
very well. jane: do you see it as a significant shift that will be permanent? some are even suggesting that he is shifting towards the center. >> rhetorically, no question. the acid test is still to come on whether or not he is willing to enforce some of this new rhetoric when it comes to issues like iran and north korea, where he still says he believes that diplomacy can play a very, very important role in bringing these nations, these ruminations, to stop developing nuclear weapons. so those tests are still ahead, and that will not just the rhetoric, but really, will his policies yield results? jane: i want to put on the screen our dynamics poll, asking the question, do you approve of the job the president is doing in afghanistan? interesting.
49% approved. a significant shift up from the middle of october. that approval number was at 41%. >> i read into doubt that when the president of the u.s. makes a case for military action, he can move part of the country, and i think that is what obama did with his speech couple of weeks ago. he moved a lot people who were questioning whether he had the determination to pursue this. he said, look, here is what we need to do, and the american people tends to give presidents the benefit of the doubt when they do that well. jane: what is the sense you're getting from the white house? they are reading more polls? >> they always are. they take polls all the time. they have been a little worried that they have been moving in a little too far to the left rhetorically, caring too much about what the democratic party
thinks, losing independence. some of the shift is to win them back. jane: there was a recent question about whether they were responding to what they were seeing. were they really responding to what the american people were saying? >> in some cases, yes. but on health care and spending, they are full speed ahead, trying to pass health care come what may. and that is not listening to the polls, which say that health care is increasingly unpopular. jane: paul, good to see. thank you very much. jon: a crack down on the use of
cellular phones by train operators, drivers, and conductors. the general public might like the rules, but the operators are not taking this sitting down. jane: the first lady of south carolina made headlines standing by her man after he admitted to having an affair, a full soul mate who was not hurt. ree r thevla
--www.ncicap.org-- the f jane: the i hope she can help them them jane: jane: the fbi hopes he can help them catch the 20 questions bandits. jon: 89-year-old boy sure to put you in the christmas spirit. what he is doing that is making the holiday much better for lots of people. jane: new details about executive salaries at top companies that cut government bailout with your taxpayer dollars. kenneth feinberg has just issued salary caps for auto makers and bank executives after goldman sachs said they would not give cash bonuses. what is the news now? >> employees at gm, gmc , and
city -- there was already a cap on the top 25 earners at those companies and some additional companies. employees 26 through 100 will have cash compensation capped at half a million dollars, and there will be other compensation allowed in terms of stock. so they are in effect tied to long-term success of the firm. the bottom line is, cash compensation will be capped. certain exemptions are allowed. we are doing more with our colleague from the fox business network this hour, but for most, compensation will be capped at half a million dollars and it will get stocks tying them to a long-term success with the companies. jane: what is the criticism?
>> these companies need the best and brightest to help them get out of the situation they have been in. you risk brain drain, that the economy shows signs of life. what is to stop them from going to another firm not receiving this assistance from the government? you risk losing the best and brightest to companies not restricted. jane: as soon as might gives more information, he will pass along. jon: divorce filings for mark sanford several months after he admitted having an affair with an argentine women. in a statement, jenny sanford said this comes after efforts at
reconciliation. the governor also released a statement. jane: arraignment on drug charges in l.a. in the death of anna nicole smith. the doctors also are fighting a medical board tried to suspend their right to practice. they illegally provided the late model with opium before she died. the judge could set a trial date today. these three are not charged with causing their deaths, and all three say that they were just trying to help. jon: deadly accidents on mass transit systems across the country. they are instituting a zero- tolerance cellular phone bands
for bus drivers and train operators. but now they are running into resistance. major metropolitan transportation authorities. how're they cracking down? >> there is a zero tolerance policy when they are supposed to be focused on driving. we now know that the engineer was texting before the crash occurred. 11 transit employees were fired out right. and the union representing achilles is upset.
-- representing employees is upset. >> it is the way they are implementing it. that is the bottom line. >> here in the nation's capital, 31 bus drivers were let go for cellular phone infractions. it is a top priority at the department of transportation, not only for those who work in the industry's. distracted driving is widely thought to be the reason there's and optic -- an uptick in accidents. they're encouraging states to develop tougher laws, and they're trying to figure out the way to use a cellular phone while driving. jon: are we headed for the day were driving or texting while you are driving his band -- is banned?
>> it is coming. i think we might be headed that way with using cellular phones. at least here in washington, people will haunt and yell at you. jon: next story, please. jane: suspected links to pakistan terrorism. these men come from the washington d.c. area. they have yet to be charged with a crime. scott has a little bit more. >> the latest we know now is we spoke of the last couple of hours.
when the u.s. comes to its conclusion, decisions will be made. we also know that over the last week, the business unfolded. it started in the united states wednesday expressed concerns without a trace. one left a farewell video, and then they contacted the fbi. the also told us the u.s. ambassador to pakistan told him that there are americans in pakistan on pakistan the soil looking to link up with militant groups. and in coming days, we saw this raid on this house down in the punjab province. some of them were in school, and they got together with
networking sites. they tried to limit ways to track down by only sending emails, so that is coming around. we know that they have laptops that they brought from the united states with them, so there will be big news coming up. they are not going to support these gentlemen until the investigation is over, and we need to underline it. a policeman down and it could juppe province said they would be deported. they're now telling us that that is not true and there is not a standing order. this investigation has to conclude before they can do that. jon: a pregnant woman in texas comes to the rescue of a police officer being beaten by a group of teens.
it was a gut reaction to stop the car and break up the beating. the teams were arrested, and the officer is recovering. the woman is not harmed. good for her. the woman accused of posting videos of aaron and bruce online is said to be ready to plead guilty. according to michael david barrett's lawyer, he was arrested after new videos shot through a peephole in a hotel appeared on the internet. he is charged with interstate stalking. prosecutors willsk for a sentence of just over two years. jane: the fbi needs your help catching bank robbers. the group is called the 20 questions bandits. for what they do is asking bank tellers while robbing them.
jane: the fbi would like your help as they try to catch a violent guy is terrorizing banks in the los angeles area. they are called the 20 questions bandits. and we will get to the richard nixon banned it in just a minute. but first, we will start with this group called 20 questions. four men, four armed robberies. why give them that name? >> after the second robbery that we believe they have committed, they entered the bank of america branch and asked multiple questions, where the keys were, where the manager was, where the cash was capped. based on that, we decided to call them the 20 questions bandits. jane: is that unusual, giving
people the sound of their voice to identify them by? >> we try to get the media to have information. jane: in these photographs from surveillance cameras, it looks like they're all wearing full masks. do you have any indication of more pictures that may give people a better view of their faces? >> unfortunately, they're covered up, making it difficult for us to identify. that is certainly why we're asking for the public's help. they have become increasingly violent. there is a threat of danger, but in the most recent robbery, they assaulted three tellers and injured them, requiring medical attention.
jane: i want to transition to this other story. this guy has hit a couple of banks with a richard nixon mask on. when you have someone with a mask, how do you go about identifying him? >> it becomes difficult. we have other information will follow up on with new leads we have, but it does become difficult when they are covering their face to identify these people. jane: and he is armed, as well. any idea why he chose the ex- president? >> i cannot answer that. he chose him for whatever reason. jane: all right. we're going to put your tip line and photographs up on the website. the number is also on your screen. if you know anything, you have heard anything suspicious, let the fbi know. but a snow also if you get any
attacks by drones is increasing during the obama administration. catherine herridge is in d.c. >> there have been two strikes this week, and the most recent says that six people were killed, among them four foreign fighters. what i have learned separately from sources is they believe the senior operative has been killed, but at this time they do not believe that it was osama bin laden, his number two, or atom don, one of the primary mouthpieces within the group. i was also told that given the sensitivity of this, it could take some time before the final determination. strikes in pakistan are part of
a campaign to broaden or expand the predator drone campaign. what is significant here is that the white house gave the cia the green light to expand the program, and what we are seeing is that that has already happened. for some context, this has been a controversial program because of civilian casualties. it is seen as one of the most successful tools in keeping al qaeda off balance, and now the administration has not only adopted it, they have chose to expand it. jon: giving back to the families of america's fallen heroes. operation snowball is inviting fallen soldiers from all around the country to dallas for a winter retreat. they will this at the stadium, be treated to a front row seat at a championship rodeo, and that is where we find chris gutierrez live.
>> take a look around me. you can see kids and families are taking part in lots of fun things. we will tell you about what they have been doing for the last couple of days. they arrive wednesday afternoon. they're putting smiles on people's faces. it has been a long time since there is any good news to smile about. as you mentioned, the families went to our rodeo, and that was quite an experience for these families who had never been before. there are now real cowboys and cowgirls. they are taking part in this, including the family of jeff bryant matthew, a commander and father of three killed in iraq nearly two years ago. for his family, this get away gives him a chance to connect with other families who not only
understand, but share in the pain. >> they get it. we connect and see each other, and kids get to realize they are not alone. there are other kids to know the same things they know and get through things they have been through. >> i felt pain. grieving and pain. since i came here, now i know that i'm not the only one, and it is ok to grief. >> back live here in dallas, you can see families taking part in this exciting carnival. he mentioned tomorrow they're off to a new stadium in arlington. they deserve a smile. jane: harris is covering a gauger who is getting comfortable at home in florida.
>> yes. neighbors say it was walking down the sidewalk. a pretty big alligator in this neighborhood. 10 feet long. apparently people are trying to go around it. the problem is, he was not going away. they say that he is quite a talker. wildlife experts -- they say there has not been anybody who has so much personality before. not unusual to see one, but probably for neighbors to see him trotting down the sidewalk. jon: incredible video capturing
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received in most corners. and we're told president is going back to the white house today and it is clear for the rest of the afternoon that he might be getting a little r and r of the trip overseas. we will let you know. jon: washington has also been waiting for this, new numbers out from the congressional budget office of the cost of the senate proposal to reform health care in this country. our chief washington correspondent is live with that story. >> is the chief actuary at medicare who is a key player in all of this. a lot of the savings and money were to come out of there. the democrats had been arguing that the bill would reduce medical costs, but the cheap said that national expenditures would go up over the senate bill, bending the curve up, not down. the chief actuary says that spending will increase, health
care spending increased by $234 billion. not only that, but 20% of all hospitals and nursing homes will get into the red under this bill because there reimbursements will be reduced. that means they will either shift costs to others, pushing up premiums, quit treating patients altogether, or go out of business. the act were also found that many positions -- physicians, hospitals, and others, have been devised to stop treating patients, making it hard for seniors to get the care they need. it would expand medicare by letting people as young as 55 by in. we do not know the details or what it would cost. that will come from the cbo, but we do not have that yet. in addition, remember, this was a last-ditch effort to find something other than a public
option, which many democrats feel like they accept. but a member of the house, anthony wiener, called the the mother of all public options, which does not make it more attractive to democrats. and many even today remain skeptical. here's one earlier today. >> i'm lukewarm, because when we get the score back from the cbo, i think it will be too costly, and to the individuals -- these are uninsured folks you are trying to get insured, for them to buy into this medicare, i think that would be expensive for them. at the end of the dead, i think will be a nonstarter. -- at the end of the day. >> so this whole idea is on shaky ground already. and a lot of people think they note the cost.
this proposal appears to be in trouble even among democrats. jane:franklin graham's sits down with lauren green, everything from how he arranged a dinner with sarah palin and his dad to charitable giving around christmas. tell us what you learned. >> sarah palin was the last notable politician to meet with billy graham's. the meeting was facilitated by bram's son, franklin, now head of grandpa association. -- of gramm's organization. she accepted the invitation to visit. he is taking heat for using a charitable organization's plane to fly palin to north carolina, but he says he did nothing wrong.
>> first of all, she is not a candidate, not running for anything, as far as i know. she was in virginia about a 35 minute flight away from natural -- asheville, and we found it appropriate to pick her up and facilitate her meeting. >> the shoebox was filled with toys. for some cases, it is the only present they ever received. he reached out for many world leaders, not on the best terms with the u.s., and north korea. he told leaders that christians living in those countries are not their enemies.
>> there are tens of thousands of north koreans that are praying for their leader. and there are others in authority. the bible commands it. i don't think they knew that. >> president obama and other officers under authority. jane: lauren, thank you very much. jon: the northeast united states is in the tight grip of winter of the sudden, where the central part of the country could get a bit warmer. crews like this in west virginia are going around the clock to restore power to those hit hard by this sudden wintry blast. we have more from accu-weather .com. >> you are right. it is quite cold.
we're seeing snow come down, 1 inch to 10 inches out of this first storm. there is a bit more punch. it looks like we will get rain added. there might even need to be flash flood watches across ventura county. keeping in mind if you are planning to do holiday shopping around a los angeles area. heavier snow coming in, great news. we're looking at high elevations, upwards of 3 feet of snow. speaking of feet, we caught in with just under 10 feet at parts of new york yesterday. clearly the lake effect band is still coming in here pretty strong. we are going to continue to see the threat up to the 3 foot mark
in some of these spots. it is pretty much the big event that we have seen since last season. on the thruway through tonight, it across the map on lower michigan, you are going to see a threat for decent snow. but it is beginning to taper off. there is a big wind gust there. that is making it feel like below zero. so make sure that you are bundling up out there. jane: i want to take it back to edgar's air force base. president and mrs. obama headed out, on their way back to the white house from oslo, norway. plenty facing than their domestically, including health care reform, the economy, etc.
jon: amazing video from a gas refinery explosion in texas. this happened back in july in corpus christi at a citgo factory. now, city officials are asking the company to improve its safety conditions. the explosion severely injured one citgo employee and lead to thousands of tons of dangerous gas into the community there. jane: we want to get back to paris at the breaking news desk. -- harris at the breaking news desk. it sounds like it has now ended. >> her attorneys are trying to fight against the death penalty here. the argument is that there is no proof about aggravating factors, such as the child suffering, not being abused or tortured, without conceding guilt. they can fight the case that the client, if she did commit
murder, did not deserve the death penalty. the judge is not ruling, saying that he will make the ruling as quickly as possible. so they have wrapped up this hearing. the judge is saying that he saw what he called "good lawyer in" today. whatever was being said in the courtroom, certain words, whatever was being said as it registered with the defended in this case, casey anthony was making her sob in the courtroom. she was physically reacting to what was being said. her defense attorneys and the prosecution are doing good lawyering, making good points that went on for more than a two hours and then wrapped up. we could hear something today or after the weekend, the judge saying he would get to work on this right away. back to you. jon: where can you find yourself a six-figure salary during a
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jon: if you're looking for work, a stable job, or a pension, eventually, you might want to apply to the government. almost one in five federal workers are now earning a six- figure salary. this as the private sector has struggled, slashing 7.3 million jobs over the past year and a half. federal workers are coming home with a nice paycheck these days. why? let's talk about it with chris edwards. he is an economist at the cato institute. i think a lot of people were surprised. you're thinking in a time like this when everybody is trying to tighten their belts, the federal government will do the same. why? >> it is remarkable.
compensation has increased a lot during eight years under president bush, but the usa today story shows that salaries have skyrocketed. the number of federal workers has doubled just since 2007. it is remarkable that while private-sector businesses and families are hurting, the federal government becomes increasingly top-heavy. jon: yes. one statistic that caught our eye from the article said that employees making $100,000 or more jumped 4 a while, during the 18 months this recession was under way. why can't they seem to tighten their belts? >> it is amazing. 380,000 federal workers now earn more than $100,000 in salary, and that is just looking at salary. i have looked at benefit data,
and workers earn enormously generous benefits. very generous health care plans, a generous pension plans. this is an issue deserving attention. i called for a freeze on federal salaries for a few years, and we need a commission to look into this, but we think it is outrageous. jon: is there every time when we have downsized government? >> absolutely. we cut defense spending in the 1990 possible for the reason that both parties needed to cut. i think congress can cut would want to. there is a lot of different areas of government waste that we should be cutting. and you know, as you pointed out, i have focused on downsizing government, a lot of different areas like housing and
farm subsidies were we should be cutting. jon: chris, thank you. jane: from your phone, to your computer, to your television, ever wonder how much content you consume every day? maybe we should be downsizing that. courtney is here. >> yes, with all the information available to us now, you would not be surprised that we consume more data than ever before. but how much more might surprise you, and some folks at uc san diego crunched the numbers coming up with 44 gigabytes of information today. that added up all of the media we came up with and what does it look like? well, basically, if we put that data onto a dvd, it would be enough to fill seven disks each day. to break it down another way,
the average number of words we hear and read every day is 100,500. we just posted a new video, so you can get entertainment information at foxnews.com. and my on-line show, one of my guest is star of "meet the browns." jane: are you hungry? that will be the model. each sheet. fast food joints are trying to get you to eat out during the recession. they want you there in their stores. we will be along with dollar deals to come.
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jon: it does not have anything to do with the big mac. it is about the recession. >> dollar deals started off in chicago. mcdonald's is modifying the dollar menu 4 breakfast items. they're going to extended in 2010. you are going to get it at the mcdonald's near you. i want to tell you about the situation. we thought retail sales in november were up about 1.3%, but for mcdonald's, it was not the same story. sales there were down a little bit. they have been one of the most strong performing companies, but not such a great month.
what is contributing to this? as far as the jobs situation, if you look at december of 2007, you had 7.5 million americans unemployed. guess what? by this time this year, you are seeing that number double. so just imagine the fewer americans trying to work, picking up a coffee. this is the way to bring them back what might be a good value. the ceo is commenting in a little bit. as far as other competitors, burger king and um! brands, there are a lot of competitors. you notice that wendy's is not there. they offer breakfast items, but they have another story. they're pulling out completely in japan. so if you go to japan, if you find yourselves there, you'll
not find wendy's anymore. but, to shut them out of the market. look for the golden arches -- mcdonald's has shut them out of the market there. jon: i am starting. jane: every day. you are going to meet this incredible little boy with a huge heart taking holiday cheer to a whole new level. what kept you he is. his simple idea turned into a major charity drive. you can even get involved. next. . (woman) dear cat.
mother called a charity to ask if he could organize a toy drive on his own. the group said yes, and now his work is exceeding all expectations. he had been reaching out to friends, family, and local businesses. how many coins as he collected for his local community? i read the statistics and i cannot believe my eyes. this year you have collected more than 1000 otoys? >> 955. jane: after people see you today, they may send you a few more. how did you, but this idea? >> i always wanted to come up with this idea and 10.2 kids around the world. so then my mom started calling
businesses and other places to see if they could help. back then i was 6 and really they said that there was nothing that they could do. then my mother called catholic charities and they said every year we do this each tribe that he can probably help with. so i came up with the idea to donate our own choice. i hand delivered over 500 fliers throughout the neighborhood. then people leave the toys on their porch and i come by and pick them up. jane: you are one busy 9-year- old boy. kimberly, i am just thinking it's my kid did this at his age. where do you put these 955 tsys? -- toys? >> they do stay in our house for
just a few weeks. it is pretty nice after they leave. jane: they must take over. i understand that this year is a little more poignant than past years because his father has been laid off, is that right? >> yes, that is right. jane: has that made it more personal for him to know the effect he is having on kids out there? >> i think my husband, when you found out he was laid off, everybody was asking about the toy drive. we will be ok as far as my husband finding a new job. jane: some people have called you a christmas angel, responsible for a christmas miracle. how do you feel about that? >> awesome.
jane: you should. i know some of the families are coming to pick some toys for their children. do you get to see the process, how excited they are? >> yes. jane: that is nice. any last words that you want to send out there at this holiday season approaches? >> first of all, i would like to say thank you to all of you who gave. if you would like to give, you can donate to the catholic charities christmas program. in jane: thank you. you are really setting the standard, adam. providinghelp.org. merry christmas to you both, thank you. jon: great story, a great kid. that wil i